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TAGBILARAN CITY – The Sangguniang Panlalawigan has put pressure to local government units (LGUs) who are implementing the rabies prevention program of the provincial government very poorly. It recently approved Resolution urging the town mayors and barangay officials “for the stricter implementation of the rules on Bohol Rabies Prevention and Elimination program,” health committee chairperson Jone Jade Bautista said in the joint committee report.
This came as stray dog are proliferating in the towns, causing vehicular and biting accidents based on the findings of the joint committee on health and public safety chaired by Board Members Bautista and Ricky Masamayor, respectively. Vehicular and biting accidents combined posted 36 per day “which is already alarming” based on DOH data, the committee report said.
The committee also said “Out of 47 municipalities and one city, only five LGUs have dog impounding activities and only 15 towns have trained dog catchers as of July 2017.” The penalty of Php500 for dog owners who fail to put leash to their pets “is not strictly implemented by Local Government Units.
But the committee report did not name the municipalities having impounding facilities and skilled dog catchers. Another to be blamed in these accidents are pet owners as mandated by law Republic Act No. 9482. “It is the responsibility of the pet owners to maintain and not allow it to roam around the streets or any public place without leash,” the committee said.
The joint committee also recommended in a separate Resolution approved by the SP for the three solons to revisit the Animal Welfare Act otherwise known as Republic Act No 8485.
The request for amendments to the said law was prompted following the cry of the pet owners over high penalty being imposed.
It said that the Municipal Rabies Council and Municipal Agriculturist Office “find it very difficult to eliminate stray dogs because of high penalty imposed by said law.”
“The penalty for any public official who is found to be in violation thereof is an imprisonment of 2 years and one day to three years and/or a fine of not exceeding Php250,000,” the committee report said.
The SP also passed a Resolution urging the League of Municipalities of the Philippines Bohol chapter to put up dog impounding clusters in their respective areas of concern “for economic purposes.” (rvo)
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